Saturday, March 12, 2011

The SMC Blog has Moved!

Please join us at our new home: This is the new website of the Single Mothers by Choice organization and the blog is now incorporated into our web site. We are very excited about our new website and hope you will visit us there soon!
Jane Mattes

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Freedom Friday: In praise of the single mother

Last week I was almost on a radio show. I was asked, by a new ether friend, and single mother sensation, Issa Mass aka SingleMomNYC, and Your Single Parenting, to be the voice of the single mother who celebrates that role and finds the joy in it. I was asked to share things I have learned along the way that make it easier: "What I was hoping you could bring to the conversation were the things that you do (or are discovering), to recharge your batteries, and allow you to find enjoyment, satisfaction and perseverance in this sometimes challenging job of Single Mom. Whether it be mantras you repeat to yourself, physical exercise, time with friends, or anything else be that adds enjoyment to your journey as a single mom, please share your perspective on how you are committed to enjoying your time as a single mom."

Although, as is often the case in the big world, versus the humble world of the blog, things happen, plans shift. Although I was understandably disappointed that the show had been postponed, the offer was a big boost to me in and of itself. The morning before the show, when I was looking out at all this snow I had to shovel, on my own, I felt pumped up. Here was a challenge: how do I remove eighteen tons of snow from the neck of my driveway with a bum foot, and two sleeping children I don’t want freaked out if they wake and I’m not here? The story ends with two sleeping boys, a shoveled driveway, and me sitting with my bare feet in the snow on my front steps sipping my instant coffee, thinking; “I amaze me.”

“What were you doing? There was a man in the house, and you were shoveling snow? Not uh. Not me. You deserve all the pain you get today from your foot. Stubborn!” My southern friend N declared later that morning. Yes. But the whole time I was thinking, this is one reason I LOVE being a single mother. Not because I have a crazy chip saying I can conquer the world (partially true) but because there is so much satisfaction in problem solving, organizing, and when I need, asking for help. (My brother had shoveled the driveway, twice the day before, without me asking. He enjoys snow.) Being a single mother can be for me for me, the opportunity to prove to myself, and my children, how capable I am. And, I love that.

So if you're a single parent by choice, or circumstance, I believe there is almost always reason to celebrate what we can do. Enjoy when people marvel at your resiliency, and success in pulling it all together. Buy yourself flowers after shoveling the driveway, or make yourself a card that says; “Brava!” and tape it by your bed. Take great joy in your ability to do what some partnered people can barely pull off with two on good day.

It’s not easy, but one thing I have learned to do, is sit with the success of it, and tell my children often, how proud I am of myself. And, they’ve learned how to play right along; “Way to go Mom!” I often hear. “Your really parallel park well!” Hey, I’ll take it.

Catherine/Mama C For more, go to:

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Modern Family

Years ago, when I made the decision to become a SMC (Single Mother by Choice) and began perusing the profiles of dozens of potential sperm donors, I was clear about one thing: I planned to use an open donor. Like most people, I’d heard plenty of stories about adopted kids who yearned for details about their biological parents, and I wanted to make sure that if my child ever felt like one of those kids, she’d have the information she needed. An open donor is a sperm donor who is open to meeting the children whom his sperm produced, and when my daughter, Jayda, turns 18, she can contact the bank I used, and they will release contact information about her donor to her.

After I gave birth to Jayda, there was an onslaught of media attention directed towards the Donor Sibling Registry (DSR). As the DSR website states, “the focus of the Donor Sibling Registry (DSR) is to assist individuals conceived as a result of sperm, egg, or embryo donation who are seeking to make mutually desired contact with others with whom they share genetic ties.” For most of the members, this means connecting half-siblings (children of the same donor), and some SMCs swear by this site. As a result of this website, Yahoo groups have been created for parents of half-siblings, people travel cross-country for yearly reunions, intense relationships are fostered between half-sibs, and some say their half-siblings share a strong bond and interact with each other much like cousins do. I, for one, have never had any interest in joining the DSR. While my family is quite small, I believe it’s enough for me and Jayda, and our lives are so rich with wonderful friendships that I don’t think Jayda will ever feel like she’s lacking love or companionship. Why would she ever need to know her half-siblings? Of course, if at some point when Jayda is older, she disagrees with me, and wants to find her biological half-sisters and brothers, I’ll be happy to share the DSR’s URL with her; but for now, I see no point in becoming a member and posting on this site.

Last weekend, I was at the home of a SMC friend who is a member of the DSR, and she told me she’d be happy to share her password with me if I ever wanted to peruse the site; I took it. And the other day, I hesitantly logged on and searched for the bank I used, as well as my donor’s number. I then discovered postings from parents of seventeen kids whom Jayda’s donor had sired…most of who were within a year of Jayda’s age! I later found out that my donor is retired (his sperm is no longer available because he’s reached his maximum number of allowed births), but that didn’t make me feel much better. I’m overwhelmed; the postings I found mean that Jayda has more than 17 half-siblings, since not everyone (me for example!) joins the DSR.

But what disturbs me is not the fact that all of these children exist…but that all of these children will have the option of contacting the donor when they turn 18. And what if they do? What if dozens of these kids get to the guy before Jayda makes her potential call? Will he still have time for her? Or any interest in meeting her? Will he be able to give her what she needs (assuming she even needs his attention)? I know I did the best I could do, and if I could do things differently, I wouldn’t; I selected what seemed like an amazing donor (and Jayda is, indeed, an amazing kid)—and I made sure that Jayda would be able to meet him if she ever desired—but clearly, sometimes the best-laid plans go awry. And while I know I can’t worry about things that may or may not happen 14 years from now…I do still lament this news. How could I not?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Surprisingly Thinking my Family is Complete

While I've talked about having three children for as long as I can remember, and taken action to prepare for my 3rd attempt at trying to conceive, I've surprisingly found myself thinking that maybe I'm really done. That thinking doesn't actually sit well with me because it's such a radical shift, and that makes me question it, but I keep coming back to the same place.

Maybe it would be nice to stick with two, two who are close
enough in age that they will be able to go to the same school until my daughter starts middle school, allowing me, when she starts K and he starts pre-K, to live the life I've always dreamed of; working part-time, being the one that gets to pick my children up and take them to their activities, having their friends over after school and really getting to know them, being the primary one to help with their homework, etc. But the cut in work hours needed to do those things wouldn't be possible if I needed to pay for child care for 3, at least not until the littlest one could go to pre-K, when my oldest, best case scenario, would be in 3rd grade.

It just doesn't feel right,
knowing that I have a choice to be more available to my children sooner. That, and the fact that I really want to make a change professionally, and that the direction I'm leaning is one that will require a couple of years of schooling. I will be meeting with a career counselor to make sure that it's really likely to be the best path for me, but I simply can't make the changes I think I need to be happy in my career if I am still paying for full-time care for one kid, in addition to the summer camps, after-school care, and the like, which I will need for my older two.

I'm not closing the door to another, but right now I'm thinking that my family works the way it is (ironically, at a time when my daughter is telling me nightly that we need another baby) but I wonder, for those who also found themselves
surprisingly thinking their family was complete, who had previously thought they would like to expand it, what was it that brought about that shift and did you stay

Karen, 39y5m, Annie, 4y2m, and Mitchell, 2y4m

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Alone -- But Not Alone

When you become a Single Mother by Choice, you expect to do a lot of things alone. In fact, a lot of the thinking and trying stage seems ALL about being alone. Deciding alone to go for it. Attending fertility appointments alone. Being alone with your doubts and disappointments. Being pregnant alone. Most of us have supportive friends and family, but when we hang up the phone, log off the chat, close the door, climb between the sheets, lay in the dark, we are alone again.

Thank God I'm one of those people who think that's a good thing. Being alone through my journey has meant I've been able to take it at my own pace. I've been happy when I wanted to be happy, grouchy when it felt right, pregnant and lazy and elated and calm. Whenever I wanted, I felt what I needed to feel, did what I needed to do, with no one to second-guess my decisions, resent my emotions or influence my thoughts.

Which is all well and good until I needed to put a leaf in my dining room table for my daughter's 3rd birthday party. I do a lot of things alone. I made the cake alone – double layer chocolate, in a strawberry shape, with pink and green icing. Masterful. I hung the streamers from corner to corner to corner to corner alone. Blew up 23 balloons alone, bravely continuing even after balloon number eight burst in my face after one breath too many. I wasn't quite alone when I did the fruit and cheese trays, but the presence on my hip of daughter #2, seven months old, is less helpful than you'd hope. I cleaned the house alone and wrapped birthday presents alone – no problemo. But the dining room table stymied me. To open it to insert the leaf, you have to pull from both sides of the table. Pull it from only one side and the whole table simply slides toward you. The last time I'd opened it had been for a family dinner, and said family had been there to help. This time, well, not so easy. The table is solid and stiff, with one broken leg that falls off when the table is moved so much as an inch. I tried to pry the table open with a screwdriver, but risked damaging the wood. Finally, the kids long since in bed on the night before the party, I lay on the floor under the table and put my toes in the crack in the middle of the table, with my back against the floor. I braced my hands on two of the table's legs and pushed with my feet, slowly prying the table open like a weightlifter doing a leg press at the gym. Voila! Genius.

The party was a roaring success. Seven preschoolers decorated sugar cookies (that I'd baked ahead of time, alone) and played without conflict and sang happy birthday, and my girl was thrilled by it all – the cake and the candles, the balloons and streamers, the presents and the song. She said please and thank you and expressed only delight even when she got two books and a play-doh set that we already have. (Having requested previously loved and regifted presents only, getting doubles is guilt-free for me, too). The other parents helped hold the baby and serve the cake and clean up afterward, and it was a lovely two hours.

But the damn dining room table faced me again when everyone went home. I ignored it all day, but it was too big and the leaf needed to come out. This time it was even harder. It needed to be yanked from both sides to release the leaf, and then pushed back together, from both sides, to restore its smaller size. I waited until after the baby was in bed and the 3-year-old was safely in front of Dora before I tackled the table that night. I pried it carefully open from beneath the table (where scratches would not show) with a screwdriver and my fingernails to release the leaf, and lifted the heavy slab out. To push it back together, I moved the whole table against a wall so I'd have a brace, and muscled it slowly, smoothly, inchingly, back to its former size. Moving the broken leg inch by inch during the whole operation only added to the fun.

The funny thing is, I didn't end up doing it alone. As I wrestled with the table, my big little girl drew away from Dora and Swiper, watchful and intrigued by mommy's activity in the dining room. She played with balloons and talked to her dinosaurs and did the things that 3 year olds do, just at the periphery of my table project. She's been underfoot for three years, and there is often a baby near by, and I am so used to NOT being alone anymore that I didn't really register her presence until I pushed the table across the room and back together with a soft clunk. And before I could even stand back to bask in my small accomplishment, before I could quite register my triumph, my newly three year old, my watchful, funny, chatty little girl piped up and said "You did it, mommy!"

Where did she come from and who knew she cared? When did I go from being alone all of the time to never being alone at all? How is it I've now got two little companions to keep me company, to cheer me up, to cheer me on? I have no idea how I went from being an autonomous woman, a Single Mother by Choice, to being captain of this little band of people, this dream team, my threesome of girls. But I'm glad I got here. I honestly never minded being alone. And now? Now I never will be.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Question Gets Asked...

If you are an SMC, you know the question to which refer. I've waited anxiously for my son to ask the Daddy Question. Everything I've read says our young children are eager to know more about their unique family structure and origins. As soon as they learn the name for people in their home and for the people in their friends' homes, children are supposed to ask. So I waited. I prepared. I rehearsed. You wouldn't think it would take this much planning just to present the truth. I came up with my script. I wrote out the words. I revised them as I practiced the conversation. I bought picture books that other moms said were good for telling and talking. I read those books to Henry. He much preferred The Cat in the Hat and Goodnight Moon. I waited some more. When would he ask? When would he want those questions answered that I just knew were on his mind?

When he was three years, seven months and one week old. When we were at Target. When it was 5 pm and the store's smoothie machine was broken. When everyone had had a long day and no one had eaten for hours. When his toddler brother was having an ear-shattering, no-holes-barred tantrum in the peanut butter aisle. That's when.

Why do we just have a mommy in our family?

His voice was barely above a whisper. Or maybe his normal volume was muffled by his brother's screams. I heard him clearly though. For a split second, I tried to convince myself that I hadn't. This can't be happening here. This is not how I planned it. Just to be sure, I got down to his eye level and asked him to repeat himself. As much as I hated that it was happening in this setting, I wanted to make sure Henry knew it was okay to ask. It's okay even if people are staring at us while our cart and a bellowing toddler block aisle 8.

Why do we just have a mommy in our family?

I prayed that I would remember my lines. The truth as told in developmentally appropriate language. All I needed to do was to say the words I'd rehearsed for years. All of Henry's caregivers have a copy of the script typed and ready at a moment's notice in case I wasn't around when he asked The Question. Why hadn't I stuck a copy in my purse? Now I was going to have to improvise and hope I didn't ruin the entire scene.

"Well Henry,” I squeaked, still crouched down near his face. "Some families have a mommy and a daddy in their house, some families have just a mommy in their house or just a daddy in their house. And some children have two mommies in their house."

"Or two daddies," he interjected.

"Or two daddies. In our family we have a mommy in our house. That's because your mommy wanted a baby to love. I wanted one very much. But I didn't find a daddy. So I went to the doctor." At this point, Henry actually turns to his screaming sibling and says,

"Yeeeuhm, sshhhh, I can't hear mommy." Talk about pressure; he really wanted to hear this.

I cleared my throat and continued, "The doctor gave me some medicine so I could have a baby. I was very, very happy when I had my baby: YOU! (Big kiss.) Then I went back to the doctor for some more medicine and had another baby."

"Leeeuhm!" "Yes, Liam. And I love him very much." But I really wish he'd be quiet right now.

And that was that. If I had it to do all over again, I would have said some things differently. I would not have said "medicine". Where did that word come from? It wasn't in the script. I would not have used the word "just" repeatedly implying only or lacking. But we were in Target surrounded by shelves of processed foods and weary shoppers. I did my best in the moment.

The moment passed and Henry became distracted by the macaroni and cheese boxes. I have a case of organic white cheddar dinners in our garage but when Henry asked for Kraft Toy Story 3 mac 'n cheese, I couldn't get it in our cart fast enough. Then he asked for a second box for Liam. Yes, of course you can get another one. Anything you want. Please let's just get our little family out of this store and back to our tiny home. Let's eat tv dinners, watch cartoons and act like nothing has changed. Because, when you think about it, nothing has.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Birth Plan B

All that I could say while being lifted into the ambulance was "she can't come now, she can't come now." The doors closed and I could think of nothing but the little girl inside of me. I was in premature labor at 28 weeks pregnant. When I arrived at the hospital the paramedics rushed me down the hallway. As I lay on my side on the gurney to ease the pain, the look of concern was reflected in the strange faces of people that lined the emergency room. I stopped briefly at a desk to receive a bracelet that simply said "Kim."

A nurse and very young doctor were waiting in a room. As I answered their questions, more people and large machines arrived. They shouted at each other and to me. I was embarrassed. I apologized because I was not prepared. I told them that I was taking a birth class tomorrow. I would be prepared tomorrow but not today. They told me how to push. All that I could say was "I am sorry, I am sorry."

I remember looking at a clock on the wall and thinking about each contraction "this too shall pass." My daughter was born so fast. My dream was here. The doctor pushed on my stomach and placed the afterbirth in a bowl. I wanted to see it, to whisper goodbye to her twin lost at 9 weeks.

After I was taken to my postpartum room, the rush of adrenaline from the birth would not let me rest. I remember pacing the hospital room floor, alone and waiting to say goodbye to her. People in red flight suits would take her away again, to the nearest neonatal intensive care unit. When I saw her in that plastic box, I whispered through the cracks, "Hi, I am your mother."

The day still seems so surreal. From the ambulance ride to the local hospital, to the room full of strange doctors and nurses yelling overhead, the whole day seems like a foggy memory. When I do think about that day, I am able to focus on my daughter's faint cry and thick eyebrows that adorned her sweet face and connected her to me.

My daughter's birth day did not go like I had planned. In a few quick moments, I had learned to trust people that I had never seen before. I trusted them with all that I valued. They held my hand and told me what I needed to do. They took care of my daughter. They took care of me and I am so grateful.

Well, she did come that day. I was not ready and it was not what I expected. Life has not been what I expected but I love it just the same, and so I say of my daughter's birth story.

Kimberly Ross

Thursday, January 20, 2011

My Choices and My Son's Choices

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, in several different contexts. One significant example is the issues that arise out of the fact that we’ve started getting into more specific details about conception. It was a non-issue for my son to find out, or more accurately, have confirmed that the donor is his biological father, although I will admit that I haven't emphasized that specific phrase. But I have mentioned it and also do talk at more length about the fact that the donor is the man who gave the sperm that fertilized my egg to create a baby.

I think kids take their cues from us on this sort of thing so I have tried hard to be very matter of fact about it all and present it as neutrally as possible, while still making it clear that I think a mom and kid family is terrific. And I focus on how generous the donor is to have made our family possible.

I never wanted it to be some deep dramatic thing for my son to find out that he had a donor or that the donor was his biological father - I wanted it to be something that he understood organically because it has been mentioned in context all along. (This is similar to the recommended approach for adopted kids.)

Things I have not talked about yet include the fact that the donor made other some other families possible too. I do plan to do that sooner rather than later, once I feel that my son has more understanding of the biology involved. This involves an element of choice on my part, as I see family more as a social construct and less as a biological one, so I don't really feel any sense of sibling kinship with these kids. However, I intend to stay as neutral as I can about that, and let him know that if he wants, I can try to get in touch with some of these other families (there are some on the DSR).

It’s started to really hit home for me that, by the way I frame his knowledge, regardless of how neutral I strive to be, I am having an indelible influence on the way my son perceives the world and his place in it. And certainly, I knew, at least intellectually, this would be the case when I signed up for motherhood. But the reality is that these choices have potentially life-long ramifications for him and are therefore so much more weighty and difficult for me to make.

Sometimes, I miss the days when my hardest decision was choosing between Pampers and Huggies! But I suppose it’s also nice that he can now choose his own boxer briefs.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

To Be or Not to Be an SMC

There are many reasons TO become a SMC and many reasons NOT TO. It's such an individual decision to make. It is difficult to be a single mom, very difficult, but I think it's also difficult to be a married mom. This decision isn't one to be taken lightly, and it helps to really look at your whole life while you decide whether being a SMC will fit into it. When I was thinking I worried endlessly about what might happen: "What will I say to people when I can't hide my pregnancy anymore?" "How will I tell my family?" What if people judge me?" "What if I meet "the one" right after I get pregnant or after I have the baby?".

What I found out (much to my surprise) was that all those worries disappeared pretty quickly once I became pregnant. I had one or two people show disapproval when I announced my pregnancy, but they weren't people I cared much about so it didn't matter to me. I was so thrilled to be pregnant, and once the bulk of the telling was over, I just reveled in the experience as much as possible. My family took a while to warm up to the idea, but I understood (from reading posts on the SMC lists) that while we spend months and sometimes years getting ready to take the leap, thus feeling comfortable with the concept, the same can't be said for our families.

My dad and sister (mom died years ago) love my son without question, and there is no awkwardness associated with the means I used to bring him into the world. I was not raised in a conservative family, but I do have SMC friends who were, and most of their families have eventually come to accept and even embrace the decision these women have made. Not all families come around, but most do on some level or another.

I haven't met "the one" yet, but the other thing I figured out is that if I do meet him he would need to be the kind of man who would welcome my son into his life. It does happen. Women find partners who love both them and their child. Some even go on to have a second child with the man they meet.

Sometimes people make insensitive comments, often well intentioned. When I told people I was pregnant, several questioned my choice to go this route - they couldn't understand why I hadn't found anyone. At first it bugged me because I saw this as such a "Plan B", but now I see it simply as my life's path, full of all sorts of experiences, both challenging and rewarding. I'm a MUCH stronger, more self-assured, confident person now and attribute that to having to really put my priorities on the line and stand behind them. I have become so confident in my decision that I don't feel like I "settled".

Yes, I still want the whole deal: mom, dad, 2 kids, etc., but I've had to make compromises. I waited a little too long (because I fell in love at 38 years old just as I was going to try to conceive, and it cost me a precious 2 years) to have another child, but I'm coming to peace with that as well.

So if you're on the fence, listen to your heart, and make your decision based upon what you know you want/need, not on the "what if's" of life. You don't know whether you'll meet someone or how your family will react or whether you'll have regrets or feel like you did something wrong. Maybe these worries will come true, but maybe they won't. But, if you truly question whether you are ready to take this step, then I suggest spending a little more time thinking. Maybe see a therapist who has experience with SMCs (I did, and she was a lifeline through the whole process). If you haven't joined the SMC email lists, that would be a good thing to do. You'll be able to see how the conversations shift - from worrying about external things to becoming invested in becoming a mother.

Becoming a mom is hands-down the best thing that has ever happened to me. I can't count the days I have sat rocking my 17 month old, crying at the thought of what life would be like if I hadn't taken the leap and become a mom. I'm tired all the time and my house is a mess, but my heart is full of love and joy I could never have imagined before I became a mom.

Good luck to you (and all the other women who are going through this difficult decision-making process)!


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Beginnings

December 31, 2010

One year ago I began my journey toward single motherhood.

Despite my age (nearly 42), it never occurred to me that I wouldn't become pregnant right away. I chose a doctor and a donor and by the beginning of April I was ready for my first attempt via intrauterine insemination. Two weeks later I learned I was pregnant, and I was elated! The few people I had told were astonished I got pregnant so quickly, but I didn't understand why. I assumed I would be pregnant because I wanted to be. Isn't that the way it works?

Still, I knew it wasn't a done deal and to get excited too early would be foolish. I would play it safe and wait until the amnio results before telling anyone but my closest friends and relatives. And so I waited.

In the meantime I had one test after another. Genetic testing, urine testing, blood testing- everything was perfect. And then I had the amnio, and all was still perfect. I was having a girl, and there were no signs of abnormalities. Finally I could drop my guard and proudly sport the enormous grin I had been suppressing for 4 months! I began looking at cribs and strollers. I started researching day care options for when I returned to work. I read about breast feeding and registered for childbirth classes. And on the day I reached 22 weeks, I finally buckled under pressure from friends and family and looked into baby registries.

And that was the last happy moment in my pregnancy, for the very same day I went in to have the full anatomy scan of my baby girl. The baby was curled up and sleeping, and the technician had some trouble measuring her. But the heartbeat was strong and if I had to come back another day when the baby was more active that was fine with me.

The doctor came in next and the first thing he said to me was, "Your baby's not doing well at all." The next several minutes were a blur. I thought he must have the wrong room. I was there for the body scan. My baby was fine; can't you see it on the screen? He started talking about her lack of growth and blood in the brain, and how the blood was flowing backward through the umbilical cord in between heartbeats. And then he said the one word that left no doubt I was in real trouble: autopsy. I freaked out, silently though, since I couldn't speak or even blink at that point. Autopsies are for dead people. He wanted to do an autopsy on my live fetus? I simply could not comprehend what he was saying. It was the worst moment of my life. A second opinion the next day confirmed it: the heart was no longer beating. The baby had passed away.

I blamed myself, naturally. No fewer than 3 doctors told me that these things sometimes happen, that they are anomalies, that nothing I did caused it, and there was nothing I could have done to prevent it. They said it was unlikely to happen again, and that women who have late-term pregnancy losses go on to have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies all the time. I really needed to hear that. But why hadn't I heard of this before? How common was it?

So rather than ask “Why?” or “Why me?” I ask, “Why don’t women talk about this?” Ever since this happened to me, it seems I haven’t met a single person who doesn’t know someone who had the same experience or who had a late-term loss herself. And most have had children since then. I’ve read books, blogs, magazines, and message boards - none have discussed the very real possibilities of inter-uterine demise. Why is this a taboo subject in our society? This isn’t some shameful secret that belongs locked in the attic. It’s very real and deserving of acknowledgment. As frightening as it is to think about losing a baby late in pregnancy, it’s even more frightening to experience it alone and unprepared. I want women to know this can happen and if it does that they are not alone, and they can become pregnant again and deliver a healthy baby.

Strangely, as my due date drew near I was not nearly as emotional as I expected. New Year’s Eve was the day I was supposed to meet my little one. I had two weeks off work during the holidays and refused to make plans with anyone, knowing I might fall apart and would want to grieve alone. Yet that hasn’t happened, and after much reflection I think I know why.

It took me a while to make sense of what happened but eventually I came to an understanding I could live with, one that has become a tremendous source of comfort to me. I believe there is a tiny being out there somewhere- a little ray of light- who is trying to make its way through the universe to me. It found me once but the timing wasn’t right. The reason is unimportant. What matters is that we belong to each other and I know that this same being will come to me again when the stars are aligned properly. So rather than thinking about the one baby I lost and waiting for another one to come along, I think about the one ray of light that came to me once and will return to me again when it’s absolutely ready to make its entrance into the world. And when it does I will love it that much more, because of the sacrifice it made to ensure that our life together began at the perfect moment.

As I sit here tonight on the cusp of the New Year, I will drink a toast to the ray of light who was wise enough to know our journey wasn’t quite over. And at midnight I will close the door on the past and drink a toast to the same ray of light who will come back to me in the very near future.